Let It Go Book Summary - Let It Go Book explained in key points
Listen to the Intro

Let It Go summary

Peter Walsh

Downsizing Your Way to a Richer, Happier Life

4.4 (154 ratings)
18 mins

What is Let It Go about?

Let It Go (2017) is your guidebook to decluttering and downsizing your home. It offers practical advice on separating what we should keep and cherish from what’s holding us back and should be unloaded. It also challenges many of the negative impressions people have about downsizing, and encourages us to reframe the process as a positive and cathartic experience.

Table of Contents

    Let It Go
    summarized in 6 key ideas

    Audio & text in the Blinkist app
    Key idea 1 of 6

    The possessions we accumulate throughout our lives can become a burden.

    As we move through different stages in life’s journey, we pick up a few material hitchhikers along the way. These include the clothes we wear, the devices we use, the furniture we decorate our homes with, and all the other things – big and small – that come into our possession over the years.

    Collectively, the great cargo of items that we accumulate and carry with us through life constitutes our material convoy. This convoy tends to grow as we get older, usually peaking around middle age.

    Many of the objects in our material convoy are well-used and well-loved. In fact, we often exhibit an absurd loyalty to things that may seem worthless to other people. The author once spent more time trying to convince someone to part with an old t-shirt than surgeons often spend convincing patients to part with an organ.

    Much of what makes up this convoy, however, isn’t loved and isn’t used. This is the clutter that piles up in our closets, attics, and under the sink. Clutter is that excess stuff in our homes that seems to grow of its own accord – and in the case of what’s under the sink, probably actually does.

    Everyone carries some clutter through their lives. But for many people, clutter is all they carry. These are the people desperately in need of a downsize. That’s because clutter is more than just a nuisance; it’s a hindrance to your success.

    Clutter can prevent doors from opening – and not just the literal doors in your home, but the figurative ones in your life too. Stuff tends to anchor you in place. This prevents you from jumping at opportunities when they come your way, like a job offer in a different city. In one US study, 78 percent of people around the age of 60 reported feeling reluctant to move homes because of all the stuff they owned.

    It can also be very expensive to own a large material convoy. The cost of keeping your belongings in storage, or of shipping them across the country, can often exceed the value of the belongings themselves. The author worked with one family that was still paying rent on a unit 20 years after putting a deceased grandmother’s things in storage.

    All that excess baggage you’re lugging through life isn’t doing you any good. The time you spend moving, arranging, cleaning, and fixing stuff could be better allotted to building loving relationships and having meaningful experiences. 

    That’s why, instead of allowing things to pile up on top of you, you need to learn to let them go.

    Want to see all full key ideas from Let It Go?

    Key ideas in Let It Go

    More knowledge in less time
    Read or listen
    Read or listen
    Get the key ideas from nonfiction bestsellers in minutes, not hours.
    Find your next read
    Find your next read
    Get book lists curated by experts and personalized recommendations.
    Shortcasts New
    We’ve teamed up with podcast creators to bring you key insights from podcasts.

    Best quote from Let It Go

    When you cant let your stuff go, your stuff wont let you go.

    —Peter Walsh
    example alt text

    About the Author

    Peter Walsh is a popular organization specialist who has hosted several TV shows on the topic, including Extreme Clutter and Clean Sweep. He’s also a regular guest on the Rachael Ray Show. Walsh’s thinking was deeply influenced by his first-hand experience of downsizing his childhood home after his parents passed away. He’s the author of seven other titles, including the New York Times bestsellers It’s All Too Much and Enough Already.

    Who should read Let It Go?

    • Hoarders who struggle to let go of their possessions
    • Adult children who have inherited cluttered homes from their late parents
    • Anyone in the process of moving homes or downsizing their current home

    Categories with Let It Go

    Books like Let It Go

    People ❤️ Blinkist
    Sven O.

    It's highly addictive to get core insights on personally relevant topics without repetition or triviality. Added to that the apps ability to suggest kindred interests opens up a foundation of knowledge.

    Thi Viet Quynh N.

    Great app. Good selection of book summaries you can read or listen to while commuting. Instead of scrolling through your social media news feed, this is a much better way to spend your spare time in my opinion.

    Jonathan A.

    Life changing. The concept of being able to grasp a book's main point in such a short time truly opens multiple opportunities to grow every area of your life at a faster rate.

    Renee D.

    Great app. Addicting. Perfect for wait times, morning coffee, evening before bed. Extremely well written, thorough, easy to use.

    People also liked

    Start growing with Blinkist now
    26 Million
    Downloads on all platforms
    4.7 Stars
    Average ratings on iOS and Google Play
    Of Blinkist members create a better reading habit*
    *Based on survey data from Blinkist customers
    Powerful ideas from top nonfiction

    Try Blinkist to get the key ideas from 5,500+ bestselling nonfiction titles and podcasts. Listen or read in just 15 minutes.

    Start your free trial